Employers Underpaying Workers Risk Losing 80 Per Cent Of Their Business

Eight out of ten people “would not use the services of a business if they found it paid less than National Minimum Wage”, while 90 per cent called those employers a “disgrace” Businesses that pay the right rates see more productive staff; eight in every ten people admit to “not working as hard” if they are underpaid Employers who do not comply with the National Minimum rate changes that came into effect on 1 October 2013 or fail to spot differences in their workers are at particular risk of a financial penalty and being publically named Advice is available to employers and workers from the free and confidential Pay and Work Rights helpline and at www.gov.uk

New research from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) reveals that businesses who pay less than the National Minimum Wage risk huge damage to their business through loss of reputation, low productivity and high staff turnover. The survey findings come as government begins to ramp up its scheme to ‘name and shame’ employers who don’t comply with the law and pay their workers at least the National Minimum Wage.

Findings from the Research Show: Eight out of ten people “would not use the services of a business if they found it paid less than National Minimum Wage” Almost the same amount would encourage family and friends to do the same, while nine out of ten people called employers who pay less a “disgrace” Underpaying staff was also found to breed resentment, low productivity and high employee turnover. Eight out of ten workers would “not work as hard” if they knew they were underpaid, not surprising when 90 per cent said they would actively resent their employer. The vast majority would seek other work.

Employment Relations Minister Jo Swinson said:”Most employers are responsible and pay their staff properly. Government is cracking down on those few rogue companies who are not doing the right thing and breaking the law by underpaying their staff. Employers should be well aware of the different rates for the National Minimum Wage depending on the circumstances of their workers. Ignorance is no excuse. If employers are unsure, they should call the Pay and Work Rights Helpline on 0800 917 2368 or visit www.gov.uk for free advice and information.

“Employers who fail to pay workers the right amount will face a financial penalty, be publicly named and shamed and may even be prosecuted. Today’s research also shows the impact on staff productivity and a business’ reputation of underpaying workers. Businesses can’t ignore this issue and stick their head in the sand.”